Patience with the exuberant coach began to slowly but surely pay off this past season. A 1-6 start would soon be followed by eight wins in their final 10 contests. The 9-8 Lions would finish with a winning record for the first time since 2017. They also posted the best divisional record in the NFC North (5-1). A franchise that has its share of disastrous droughts when it comes to winning and championships is expected to win a division title.
“I do think that we took our medicine in the past couple years,” said Holmes (via ESPN’s Eric Woodyard). Me and Dan talk about it all the time. We’ve coached the Senior Bowl; we had to do ‘Hard Knocks.’ We’ve done all that.
The misery is well-documented. The Detroit Lions are the only team in the NFC not to make a Super Bowl appearance. The club’s last NFL title came in 1957. There’s been no division title since 1993 (the old NFC Central) and no playoff win since Wayne Fontes’ club blasted the Dallas Cowboys, 38-6, in the 1991 divisional round. So, is there a little bit of pressure on Campbell and company?
On Thursday night at Arrowhead Stadium, Detroit will enter the lions’ den per say when they take on the reigning Super Bowl champion Chiefs in the league’s prime time opener. Patrick Mahomes and company led the NFL in scoring in 2022 but the Lions were fifth thanks to a solid year from quarterback Jared Goff. It figures to be an entertaining evening in Kansas City, and a real acid test for the up-and-coming Lions.